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  1. #1
    Master miguel's Avatar
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    selling ammo as a business

    If someone wanted to start a business that sold ammunition (from companies like Federal, Winchester, Blazer, Wolf, etc.) would they need to have an FFL or are companies that sell ammo and accessories not regulated by the ATF?

    To clarify, I don't mean selling reloaded/remanufactured ammo, I mean a new company that would be buying ammo from a manufacturer or wholesaler as a business and then reselling it to consumers via a store, gun show booth or a website.

    EDIT: I think the answer is no, based on this, but still would like some thoughts on the idea: ATF Online - Firearms - Frequently Asked Questions - Conduct of Business (Licensees)
    Last edited by miguel; 12-12-2010 at 23:25. Reason: edit to include link to ATF website
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  2. #2
    Grandmaster Cwood's Avatar
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    If you sell ammo you do not need an FFL whether its new or re-manufactured. Now if you manufacture the ammo you need a FFL to sell it.
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  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cwood View Post
    If you sell ammo you do not need an FFL whether its new or re-manufactured. Now if you manufacture the ammo you need a FFL to sell it.
    This ^^^

    Selling ammo (retail etc.) doesn't require an FFL. But if you want to manufacture and sell ammo (either retail or wholesale) then you need an FFL.

  4. #4
    Master 451_Detonics's Avatar
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    Not sure any of the big distributors will sell to you with just a State retail sales license. I think most will require an FFL. You will also want to carry liability insurance.
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  5. #5
    Sharpshooter kevinj110's Avatar
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    The Hardware store I work for doesn't have an FFL and they buy ammo from the companies or from a distributor which ever is running the best deal with shipping and such.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by 451_Detonics View Post
    Not sure any of the big distributors will sell to you with just a State retail sales license. I think most will require an FFL. You will also want to carry liability insurance.
    I know AIM surplus will. A few years ago my dad, brothers, myself, and some friends all went in together on a pallet (60,000 rounds) of 7.62X39 ammo. No questions asked other than where we wanted it delivered.

  7. #7
    Master 451_Detonics's Avatar
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    Aim isn't a wholesale distributor, they are a retailer. They will sell to anyone at the listed prices which are significantly higher than someone like Ellett Brothers or RSR.
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  8. #8
    Master miguel's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 451_Detonics View Post
    Not sure any of the big distributors will sell to you with just a State retail sales license. I think most will require an FFL. You will also want to carry liability insurance.
    Any certain kind or will the insurance man know what I need?
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  9. #9
    Master 451_Detonics's Avatar
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    Your Insurance man should know or know who to recommend for retail liability. You can make money doing this as there are always going to be people who want a box now rather than a case later from online but I think it will be tough if you plan a storefront as the profit margins aren't going to be that big. I would price places like Dick's, Dunham's, etc and see if you can make money selling at the prices they sell at. I would think an investment of about $75,000 up front would be needed to get started even in a small way. $125,000 would be more realistic. Also a C&R can get discount from some distributors, you might consider that as well. As long as you don't try to use a C&R selling firearms I see no problem with the Bat Boys using it for discounts on ammo.
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  10. #10
    Master miguel's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 451_Detonics View Post
    Your Insurance man should know or know who to recommend for retail liability. You can make money doing this as there are always going to be people who want a box now rather than a case later from online but I think it will be tough if you plan a storefront as the profit margins aren't going to be that big. I would price places like Dick's, Dunham's, etc and see if you can make money selling at the prices they sell at. I would think an investment of about $75,000 up front would be needed to get started even in a small way. $125,000 would be more realistic. Also a C&R can get discount from some distributors, you might consider that as well. As long as you don't try to use a C&R selling firearms I see no problem with the Bat Boys using it for discounts on ammo.
    Thanks for the tips.

    I know it would probably be a tough row to hoe, but it just seems like there needs to be a middle ground between high volume online sites like AIM, etc. and the tables at the small to mid-size local gun shows where some guy has three boxes of eight different calibers that look like they've been in his basement since 1964.

    Walmart is still probably going to be the king for plinking/target type sales for many shooters, but I think offering additional manufacturers products might attract some interest at the these shows.

    Sounds like I need to write a business plan and run it by someone with some real world experience in starting their own business.
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